WILMINGTON — Padua goalkeeper Ellie Semmel made several impressive saves against Caravel on May 3, but the Buccaneers’ prolific offense was able to knock three into the net in a 3-1 victory under the lights at Abessinio Stadium in a battle between traditional Delaware soccer powerhouses.
Semmel, a freshman, was tested early, stopping a long free kick, and the Bucs sent another just wide in the 10th minute. She stopped another free kick by Caravel’s Lauren Hayden, and Lillian O’Brien sent a shot just over the crossbar a minute later.
The Bucs broke through in the 20th. Reese Mushinski intercepted a goal kick and sent the ball to Alaina Alston. Alston settled about 32 yards in front of the goal and launched a shot into the upper left corner to give the Buccaneers a 1-0 lead.
The Pandas had an opportunity in the 26th, but a free kick led to a shot being headed over the net. Caravel kept up the defensive pressure, and that led to the team’s second goal with about seven minutes remaining in the half. Alston worked the ball to Mushinski in traffic, and she sent it to Anaya Price. Price sent a shot at a harsh angle into the far left side of the net to double the lead.
Semmel made several impressive stops into the second half, but a Pandas miscue cost them in the 51st. On a ball played back to Semmel, the Bucs’ Sydney Hayden stepped in front of the keeper as she kicked the ball, intercepted it and tapped into an open net.
The Caravel defense made life difficult for Padua all night, but the Pandas finally broke through a few minutes after the third goal. Lauren Duffy took a free kick from the top of the 18-yard box in the 57th. That resulted in an impressive save by Bucs keeper Taylor Fitzgerald, but seconds later the Pandas were awarded another free kick after a Caravel yellow card. This time, from 30 yards out to Fitzgerald’s left, Duffy drilled the shot through traffic into the upper far corner.
The Bucs were in control after that, however, with Semmel keeping them from increasing the lead. Caravel had five corner kicks in the game’s final 20 minutes but could not convert.
The Buccaneers outshot the Pandas, 19-4, and had a 7-2 edge in corners. Fitzgerald made three saves. Caravel (9-1-1) travel to Delmar on Monday for a 4 p.m. tilt.
For Padua, Semmel made 16 saves. The Pandas fell to 7-3 and visit Middletown on Monday at 6:15 p.m.
All photos by Mike Lang.
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